About 2-3 years ago, the way of the waterfall workflow became obsolete once we established a more modular approach to our design process. Gone are the days of presenting a homepage first, getting approval, then scrambling through the rest of the template design before handing off to dev.
With the adoption of atomic design, we decided to approach things a little differently. Before any design comps are started, we create “element collages” (or style tiles as they’re called elsewhere) that establish a look and feel for various components of the redesign. We still create design comps later in the process, but the ability to have a style approve early on helps for an agile work environment.